2nd Test: Gambhir backs Gill to open, says India must play 5 bowlers

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New Delhi, Dec 22  India need to play Shubman Gill as Mayank Agarwal’s opening partner and include both Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin along with three fast bowlers for their upcoming second Test against Australia, says former India batsman Gautam Gambhir.

Gambhir also said that Ajinkya Rahane, who will captain India for the remainder of the series in the absence of Virat Kohli, should also take up the number four spot that has been left vacant by Kohli.

“I will want to see Rahane at number four. I will not want to him stay at number five because if he is the captain now, he has to lead from the front. So, Rahane should play at number four in place of Virat Kohli,” Gambhir said on Star Sports show ‘Cricket Connected’.

“KL Rahul should play at number five and Rishabh Pant should play at number six. Jadeja and Ashwin should play at number seven and eight and then three seamers. I will want to go in with five bowlers,” said Gambhir.

Gambhir said that he was in favour of India sticking with Shaw at the start of the series despite his poor form in the Indian Premier League (IPL) but his poor performance in the first Test means that he now needs to be dropped.

“I wanted Prithvi Shaw to start the series because if a player has scored a hundred and two fifties in four Test matches and hit a fifty in the last tough tour to New Zealand, then you start with him, no doubt the form was not good,” said Gambhir.

“But now in the type of form, he is in, more than the form his confidence is very low, so I will want to see Shubman Gill at the top along with Mayank Agarwal and Pujara at number three.”


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